Category Archives: Health

How Urinary Incontinence Can Affect Sexual Health

incontinence

In a recent study, a link between urinary incontinence and negative sexual health outcomes was discovered. In a BJU International study, many women with urinary incontinence problems discussed their decline in sexual activity and sexual arousal over the past year or so. Additionally, men with urinary incontinence troubles also noted a decrease in sexual desire as well as difficulties with different sexual functions.

The English Longitudinal Study Of Aging

In light of these problems, these individuals were invited to participate in the English Longitudinal Study of Aging (ELSA) that consisted of 3,805 participants. This study looked at aging, retirement, and health within middle-aged and older men and women who live in the England area. 20% of the women participants and 7% of the men participants reported issues with incontinence within the last 12 months. The results of their study showed that in fact, there was a significant link between declining sexual health and urinary incontinence problems.

Dr. David Lee, lead author of the study and doctor of Manchester Metropolitan University, discusses his findings. He explains, “Our findings highlight strong links between urinary incontinence and a number of negative outcomes regarding sexual health. Both urinary incontinence and later-life sexuality remain taboo subjects in society and are likely to be under-reported as coexisting health problems. Given the relatively high occurrence of incontinence, particularly among women, healthcare professionals should be aware of the potential impacts on quality-of-life and well-being, and recognize that sexual activity and satisfaction are key factors in this equation” (source).

The Silence Factor

Far too often, men and women dealing with incontinence and the decline of sexual desires are too ashamed to speak up about the problems they are experiencing. By keeping such a significant health problem a secret, these men and women are only reducing their overall quality of life. In that, researchers observed that signs of depression were greatly increased–strongly associating with the effects of lower sexual health due to urinary incontinence. Additionally, researchers also noted that many of the participants experienced high levels of anxiety and embarrassment due to the leakage, odor, and other effects that come with urinary incontinence. Luckily, with the right medical guidance, urinary incontinence and related sexual problems can be lessened and even cured.

In an additional study published in Sexual Medicine back in March of 2017, results showed that women with urinary incontinence were more likely to abstain from sexual activities far more than women who had little to no problems with incontinence. This stems from the embarrassment and bladder sensitivity that comes with urinary incontinence problems. Additionally, women who struggled with urinary incontinence also experienced less sexual desire, increased sexual discomfort, and less sexual satisfaction–more so than the men who dealt with incontinence issues as well. However, men with incontinence did admit to experiencing trouble with arousal, erectile dysfunction, and even the ability to orgasm during sexual activities.

Many doctors and physicians can’t stress enough the importance of speaking up; one should never feel ashamed or embarrassed about their experiences with urinary incontinence and sexual dysfunctions. The earlier you see a doctor, the better and faster they can come up with a treatment plan that will help you regain your normal desires.

Low Testosterone in Women has its Consequences

low-testosterone-in-women-624x413

Incontinence in Women May Be Linked To Low Testosterone Levels

Incontinence affects millions of American women and can be a difficult thing to grasp for many.

Did you know that incontinence in women may actually be linked to low testosterone levels? When we hear the phrase ‘low testosterone’, our minds tend to lean toward males but women have testosterone as well that is vital to the regular functioning of the body. Low testosterone levels in women can have adverse effects on the body, aside from incontinence such as low energy, increased urine leakage, and fluctuating hormone levels.

In a study that was conducted by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey that consisted of 2123 females, it was discovered that women in the lowest quartile of testosterone level had 48% increased odds of stress incontinence and 65% increased odds of mixed incontinence compared with women not in the lowest quartile (Source).

Testosterone In Women Is Normal

Women require a small amount of testosterone in order for their bodily functions to work smoothly and at a normal rate. According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, normal testosterone measurements range from 15 to 70 ng/dL (Source). When this number is lower, the side effects of incontinence and other medical issues become more apparent.

The Effects of Low Testosterone in Women

Beginning in the mid 40’s, women’s testosterone levels naturally begin to decline and is usually nothing to worry about. Levels of testosterone that are too low, though, can result in more serious medical conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), heart complications, and breast cancer. Urinary incontinence during menopause and thereafter is a concern of many in this age group.

Women with lower levels of testosterone also tend to suffer from health issues such as:

• Varied hormone levels
• Reduced energy levels
• Lowered sex drive
• Compromised bone health
• Lowered pain tolerance

Normal testosterone levels in women aid in:

• Relief of menopausal symptoms
• A Higher libido
• Prevention of breast cancer
• Prevention of heart disease

The best way to address and establish low estrogen and/or testosterone levels is to visit your doctor who will give you a proper diagnosis. Through blood tests and various examinations, estrogen and testosterone levels can be better managed and remedied.

Wearever’s Quality Incontinence Products

At Wearever, we take pride in offering the most effective and reliable incontinence products for men and women. Browse our selection of incontinence panties, incontinence briefs, and reusable bed pads.

10 Tips to Avoid Getting Sick

tips-to-avoid-getting-sickWinter months are on the horizon and with the weather changing and colder temperatures rolling in, the chances of getting sick start to increase. Check out our top 10 tips for avoiding colds and illnesses this year.

1. Skip Finger Foods

Eating foods with your hands creates an easy pathway for the germs on your hands to make it inside your body. Consider making or ordering foods that you can eat with a knife and fork instead of with your hands.

2. Exercise

The cold winter weather makes it more difficult for many of us to get outside, but it’s worth putting on a jacket for! Even just 30 minutes of walking a day can greatly increase your immune system and help you fight off colds or sickness.

3. Sleep

Your body needs to be fully rested in order to fight off any germs or bacteria. In general, its recommended to get at least 8-10 hours of sleep per night.

4. Consider Taking Vitamins and Probiotics

Vitamin D levels are often lower in the winter, but it’s an important vitamin to help your body fight off colds. A small daily vitamin D tablet can make a big difference.

5. Do things that make you happy

People who are stressed or depressed are more likely to become sick, studies show. Make time to do things that make you happy. Whether that’s spending time with your family or friends, going to a yoga class or reading a book, it’s worth it.

6. Wash your hands

Washing your hands is a very easy way to stay germ free. To effectively wash your hands, use hot water and spend at least 20 seconds at the sink and dry them well.

7.Don’t touch your face

Your eyes, nose and mouth are direct channels into your body, so avoid touching them as much as possible. In addition, your skin’s pores will absorb bacteria from touching your face, so avoid holding your head in your hands or rubbing your face.

8.Sanitize your surfaces

Many common surfaces collect germs and bacteria without you realizing how dirty they really are. Consider cleaning your kitchen counters, door handles, television remotes and cellphones. Switch from a cloth purse to a vinyl one that can be wiped down to not track in germs.

9. Eat nutritious foods

Fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins that will boost your immune system and help you from getting sick. Consider adding them to a soup to stay warm and eat well – a win, win!

 10.Stay away from others who are sick

Keep your distance from people who are coughing, sneezing or otherwise saying they don’t feel well. Their germs can easily spread to you. This includes hugs, handshakes or sharing common objects, like a pen or phone. If it’s unavoidable, be sure to wash your hands immediately after your visit with them.

Besides the annoyance of coughing and sneezing, colds can be difficult for people with incontinence. Be sure to use these easy tips to stay healthy and active this winter!

The Role Bacteria Plays in Incontinence

bacteria-and-incontinence

In order to understand the role that bacteria plays in urinary incontinence, one must understand the way scientists understood bacteria’s habitation in the human urinary system. The urinary tract has long thought to have been a clean and sterile environment where no bacteria can grow. Since urine is constantly being produced and expelled from the system, it was thought, there was not enough time for bacteria to grow therein. Until today, researchers did not have the invasive tools needed to examine the growth of bacteria in the urinary system. As of today, however, the proverbial floodgates have opened and we now know more than ever about what is causing urinary incontinence.

The Cause of Urgency Incontinence May Lie In Bacteria

It was originally thought that urgency incontinence was caused by weak muscles, psychosomatic triggers, and abnormal signaling that prompted the bladder muscles to contract involuntarily. Unfortunately, these factors only seemed to account for about 3/5ths of the cases. That is, not all of the urgency incontinence cases could be explained by these causes.

Scientists and researchers continued to search for the other underlying conditions that made 2/5th of cases respond adversely – or not respond at all – to treatments catered to the above conditions. Researchers at the university of Oregon Health and Science University recently published a study in Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology, and found that that the bacteria that live in the urinary tract may hold the answers we seek (Source).

Bacteria Discovered In Urinary Tract

Even when clinical cultures come back negative, there still may be a host of biological life (i.e. bacteria) in the urinary tract. These bacteria may be responsible for many of the symptoms individuals with incontinence face. Researcher’s’ goal was to find how the urinary microbe is different between women with urgency urinary incontinence, and women without urgency urinary incontinence.

Healthy Bacteria: Key Differences Between Women With and Women Without Incontinence

They collected urine samples using a transurethral catheter and sequenced the samples with Illumina MiSeq., afterwards, processing them with workflow package QIIME. What that basically means is that the bacteria samples obtained were unadulterated or mismatched with other bacteria that may have come from external tissues. The findings were sound and suggested that there is a community of bacteria that live in the urinary tract! The most surprising finding: women with urgency urinary incontinence had less bacteria than women without urgency urinary incontinence.

This bacteria community creates a “microbial diversity” in women with urgency urinary incontinence. Between women with and women without urinary incontinence, it was discovered that women with actually had 14 less types of bacteria on average. The more severe your urinary symptoms, the less bacteria you are likely to have.

The Difference Between Healthy and Unhealthy Bacteria

We need both good and bad bacteria in our bodies. An unhealthy balance of good versus bad bacteria can be what leads to you feeling unhealthy or ill (Source). Bad bacteria can multiply and grow, leading to irritation, inflammation, and infection. Left untreated, bad bacteria can also contribute to a variety of health problems. Probiotics, defined as good bacteria actually help with a variety of bodily functions including digestion and homeostasis. Probiotics also help reduce the occurrence of urinary tract infections, a real concern for individuals afflicted by urinary tract.

Incontinence Underwear For Men and Women

Incontinence briefs and incontinence panties by Wearever are designed to minimize the bacteria that cause unpleasant odors. Bonded waterproof outer layers prevent leakage and spotting, while inner layers wick away moisture from the body while absorbing stray urine. The middle layer, made with Agion™ antimicrobial fibers prevent bad bacteria from multiplying and growing out of control.

Dedicated To Awareness and Further Education

At Wearever we are dedicated to bringing you the most current news relating to urinary incontinence. We wish to give our readers methods in which to better understand their conditions and any new remedies that are on the horizon. Until next time, stay dry!

10 Apps for Caregivers and Incontinence Support

caregiver-apps

In 2015, Pew Research Center released survey results showing that 68 percent of U.S. adults now own a smartphone and about 45 percent now own some form of tablet. With the growing number of smartphone users, there are now apps available for those with incontinence and caregivers as well. Check out the top 10 apps we found below:

  1. GreatCall Link: The app provides caregivers with peace of mind during their day to day lives. A caregiver can monitor a loved ones leaving and arriving home, as well as viewing a list of their daily activities to ensure they are doing well. In the case of an emergency, the caregiver is notified of the date, time and type of help provided.
  1. Bladder Diary: Users can track their fluid intake and urine output, which can assist in conversation with medical professions to better understand their level of incontinence and track treatment success.
  1. Sit or Squat: Users can find the nearest public restroom anywhere in the U.S.
  1. Kegel Kat: Reminds users to practice kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles.
  1. Kegel Trainer: Provides easy to follow Kegel exercises and daily reminders for men and women to strengthen pelvic floor muscles.
  1. Waterin: This app provides reminders to drink more water throughout the day. Users can set personal water consumption goals and track their intake.
  1. Water Your Body: Users can program their personal information and determine how much water they need to drink on a daily basis, then they can track their intake.
  1. SparkRecipes: This app provides 500,000 recipes with the ability to search recipes to help meet specific dietary restrictions or preferences.
  1. HealthyOut: Eating out with dietary restrictions can be challenging, but this app helps you find and order at healthy restaurants anywhere in the U.S.
  1. CareZone: A free app for users that features a profile to log information about your loved one. You can invite other friends and family members to join as “helpers” to keep everyone on the same page. It also assists with medication management by tracking type, dosage, pharmacy and more.

Have you used your smartphone or tablet to help with your incontinence symptoms or to care for a loved one? We’d love to hear from you!

5 Questions about Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises Answered

pelvic-floor-exercises

  1. What is the pelvic floor?

The pelvic floor is a layer of muscles that support the pelvic organs, which are the bladder and bowel in men and the bladder, bowel and uterus in women.

  1. What are pelvic floor disorders?

When the pelvic floor is weak or damaged, it does not properly support the pelvic organs. There are 3 main types of pelvic floor disorders, including urinary incontinence, fecal incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.

  1. What exercises strengthen the pelvic floor muscles?

Kegel exercises are a popular way to boost the control of pelvic floor muscles. The Mayo Clinic shares a how-to guide for Kegel exercises here. Prevention Magazine online also shared four exercises from Amy Stein, author of Heal Pelvic Pain.

  1. What are the benefits of pelvic floor muscle exercises?

Pelvic floor muscle exercises can improve bladder and bowel control as well as reduce the risk of prolapse. For women, these exercises can improve recovery after childbirth or gynecological surgery. For men, these exercises can ease the recovery after prostate surgery.

  1. Will pelvic floor muscle exercises solve urinary incontinence?

While strengthening the pelvic floor muscles through targeted exercises is linked to improvements in bladder control, it doesn’t solve bladder leakage all together. While trying the pelvic floor exercises, protect yourself from accidents with our comfortable incontinence underwear.

Top 6 Tips for Managing Multiple Sclerosis

multiple-sclerosis-awareness-month

In 2003, March was named the annual National Multiple Sclerosis Education & Awareness Month. In honor of this observance, we wanted to share information and tips. MS is a chronic disease affecting the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. It can cause problems with vision, balance, muscle control and other bodily functions. Science continues to improve the treatments available to ease symptoms, prevent relapses and slow the disease’s progression.

Check out these top six tips for managing multiple sclerosis.

  1. Get enough rest.

While it may be difficult for those with multiple sclerosis to get a good night’s sleep, it’s important to get enough shut-eye. One suggestion for getting the rest you need is to develop a consistent night-time routine, including getting on a set sleep schedule and using the time right before bed to relax.

  1. Exercise gently.

Even 30 minutes of physical activity a few times a week makes a big difference in reducing symptoms of feeling tired or depressed. Aerobic workouts are perfect for exercising your heart, and resistance training can sustain your muscle mass.

  1. Watch what you eat.

There is no perfect food plan for those with MS, but eating healthy helps your body stay properly nourished and improves it’s operating ability.

  1. Manage your stress level.

Stress is never a positive emotion, but for those with multiple sclerosis, it is even more taxing. Whenever possible, it is best to identify external and unique stressors to alleviate them as much as possible.

  1. Plan ahead.

One of the ways to manage your stress level is to plan ahead whenever possible. For example when seeing your doctor, brainstorm questions or symptoms you’d like to discuss to make the most of your visit. Another idea is to bring your own food to a social gathering to ensure there is something that works for you. Finally for the 80 percent of people living with MS that also experience urinary urgency and frequency, using comfortable and absorbent undergarments can alleviate the stress of accidents.

  1. Stay cool.

Shifts in temperature are known to aggravate symptoms of multiple sclerosis. Situations that can cause them to worsen include really hot weather, fever, hot baths/showers and overheating due to exercise. Instead, try to stay indoors during extreme temperatures, find shade in the sun and use fans to help stay cool.

To read more about Wearever’s continued commitment to supporting those with Multiple Sclerosis, read here.

Incontinence-Friendly Recipe: Chicken and Strawberry Salad

chicken-and-strawberry-salad

Spring temperatures mean new fresh produce is hitting the stands! We’re excited to dig into this refreshing salad from MyRecipes.com. It’s perfect for lunch and hearty enough to serve as weekday dinner.

It also has the added benefit of avoiding common ingredients that can aggravate urinary incontinence. We hope you enjoy this crisp salad and the beautiful spring weather!

Ingredients:

Dressing:

1 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon water

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Salad:

4 cups torn romaine lettuce

4 cups arugula

2 cups quartered strawberries

1/3 cup vertically sliced red onion

12 ounces skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast, sliced

2 tablespoons unsalted cashews, halved

Directions:

  1. To prepare dressing, combine sugar, red wine vinegar, water, salt and black pepper in a small bowl.
  2. Gradually drizzle in oil, stirring constantly with a whisk.
  3. Set dressing aside.
  4. To prepare salad, combine romaine with arugula, quartered strawberries, red onion and chicken in a bowl; toss gently.
  5. Place about 2 cups chicken and salad mixture on each of 4 plates.
  6. Top each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons cashews.
  7. Drizzle about 4 teaspoons dressing over each serving.
  8. Enjoy!

Not sure what diet has to do with incontinence? Check out how small nutrition modifications can reduce urinary leaks. Also check out our incontinence briefs and incontinence panties that provide the protection you can count on.

Cervical Health Awareness Month

 

cervical-health-awareness-month
Cervical cancer affects an estimated 12,000 women annually. Unlike so many other diseases though, there have been huge strides in vaccination and screening over the last several years leading to increased awareness, earlier testing and improved treatment options.

It’s important these efforts continue to ensure more women stay ahead of this awful disease. As part of that, the American Social Health Association and the National Cervical Cancer Coalition named January Cervical Health Awareness Month, a time dedicated to educating and encouraging women to get tested and vaccinated.

Lynn Barclay, ASHA president and CEO shared with HealthyWomen.org, “Science has put us in a remarkable position to protect women from cervical cancer, but technology is only half the battle. It’s imperative we continue efforts that not only promote greater access to health care, but that we also inform women about cervical cancer and the marvelous means we now have to prevent this disease.”

Even with cervical cancer now being very treatable, diagnosis is still life altering and can lead to a number of side effects. One complication not discussed often is urinary leaks. Radiation therapy to the pelvis can cause urge incontinence. Additionally, surgery or treatment can weaken muscles leading to stress incontinence.

For women dealing with leaks, it can feel embarrassing or create additional anxiety with the fear of having an accident in public. Reducing this for anyone living with incontinence is at the foundation of why we started the company. Our hope is that Wearever absorbent incontinence underwear can help in a small way by providing a comfortable and discrete solution that looks and feels like real panties.

We also want to help continue spreading the important message: This January, take the time to schedule your next cervical cancer screening and remind the women in your life to do so as well!